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Three charged for submitting false drinking water reports results in Siskiyou County
Three men have been charged with 24 misdemeanor complaints by the Siskiyou County District Attorney’s Office for allegedly failing to report positive findings of bacteria in public water systems. A State Water Resources Control Board investigation determined that samples taken from public water systems in Siskiyou County were positive for bacteria and were not reported to the State Water Board’s Division of Drinking Water.
Charged in Siskiyou Superior Court on Tuesday, Oct. 25 were Ronald Dean Larue of Dunsmuir, Wayne Garland Grigsby of McCloud and David Dwayne Toms of Weed. Larue was charged with 18 complaints, Grigsby with three and Toms with three. The complaints were issued following a review of information provided by the State Water Board.
The State Water Board investigation – conducted by its Office of Enforcement and the Division of Drinking Water – found that multiple samples taken during the period from March 2012 to September 2015 were not reported to Division of Drinking Water after they were found with positive bacterial results by water personnel in the cities of Dunsmuir and Weed, and the McCloud Community Services District. The three men have also been accused of failing to conduct the necessary repeat sample tests prescribed in state regulations following an initial positive bacterial sample.
“Honest and accurate testing and self-reporting by drinking water system operators is the foundation upon which federal and state drinking water standards are based. We take these alleged violations of drinking water regulations very seriously and support the district attorney’s efforts to enforce the law,” said Bruce Burton, assistant deputy director for the State Water Board’s Division of Drinking Water. He continued saying, “While the filing of this complaint is an important step, the Division of Drinking Water is still reviewing the evidence from our investigation and more enforcement actions from the State Water Board could be issued against these three individuals and all the public water systems involved in these allegations.” A copy of the complaint can be found at the State Water Resources Control Board’s Office of Enforcement’s webpage at: http://www.waterboards.ca.gov/water_issues/programs/enforcement/orders_actions.shtml#a2016
The State Water Board investigation also determined that the Mount Shasta Public Works also had one instance of failing to report a positive monthly bacteriological finding to the site’s Division of Drinking Water. The Siskiyou County district attorney has not yet filed any charges against the Mt. Shasta city staff.